We had an uneventful start for this dirt road, ATV/hiker trail, and bushwhacking adventure. The dirt road part was a tedious slog with a grand pay off at the summit of Cerro Vista. Well named to be sure. We then hiked through stunted spruce and bristlecone pine forest to the edge of the massive amphiteatre that forms the outline of the two peaks, Cerros Vista and Olla. Olla was nondescript. The summit had no views but the cliff edge, just feet away, had plenty.
The urge to bushwhack overwhelmed us and we headed down hill through an old timber sale. This whole area was leased for cutting at one time long ago. Some of it cut, some not. The roads remain, grown over like old scars. Stumps and slashes have faded into grey ghosts.
We were beginning our final road slog when we started to smell smoke. This should not be as there was a stage II fire restriction in place. The smoke became more intense as we descended, filling our eyes and noses. Soon planes were circling the area and our attention turned towards getting down to the cars with concern about where the fire was exactly and wether our egress would be blocked.
Helicopters with water buckets were seen flying overhead by the time we reached the trail head. A hasty retreat was beaten down the now abandoned Dalton Canyon Road with forest service trucks speeding past us.
We later learned through Jim Ivanovich that the fire had started near us in Sardinas Canyon. By today (June 26th) this district of the forest was closed thanks to the idiocy of some yahoos who could not bother. The following is from Carson National Forest:
This hike was attended by SK Lund, Jim Ivanovich, CK, and Gustaaf. We hiked 10.25 miles, 2330 feet, and 5 hours, 33 minutes.